Hunan Woman Sentenced to Seven Years in Prison for Reading Falun Gong Literature at Friend’s Home

Ms. Xiang prior to her arrest

Ms. Xiang prior to her arrest

A court in Hunan province recently ordered that 61-year-old former bank employee Ms. Xiang Huaixiang be sent to a prison camp for seven years because she practices Falun Gong.  Ms. Xiang was abducted by security agents on July 19, 2010, while gathering in private with eleven other elderly practitioners to read Falun Gong teachings and share their spiritual understandings.

Suddenly, agents from the 610 Office and police raided the home and detained them. Four of the practitioners were released because they were over 80 years old, but others remained in custody. Between November 2010 and April 2011, Ms. Xiang had four sham trials, including one at which a court-appointed lawyer pleaded guilty for her against her will. At the last trial, a judge from Suxian District Court in Chenzhou announced she would be sent to prison for seven years. 

In 2000, Ms. Xiang’s daughter, Ms. Chen Lijuan was detained for practicing Falun Gong and rendered mentally unstable due to the torture she suffered in custody.  She never recovered and died in 2004. She was only in her 20s. For a photo of the elderly Ms. Xiang, see photo gallery.